The Uphill Slide

There is always something.

Small Stuff

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Mountains out of mole hills. Or simply a small step on a staircase. It’s stupid. Sweating the small stuff while diving right into the big stuff. There’s a lack of control on the big stuff that gives you an excuse. The small stuff? Electives. I might do it or I might not. I’m sweating the wrong things.

I didn’t have a car to get to the movie in Dormont. The car is a suit of armor making me anonymous. You can’t describe me. You describe my car. No one knows I turned up the wrong street. But riding mass transit or walking has a certain nakedness and vulnerability.

I almost persuaded myself to skip it because I had to take the bus and T someplace new. Then I pushed the buy on an advance ticket. Now I have to go. But I could still talk myself out of it. I’ve been able to convince myself to back out with the right arguments. But the ticket makes it harder.

I left early just in case. Sweating in the summery fall day of September 24. A date of life and death in my past. Today, just movie night. I sat underground waiting for the train to pull into the station. I followed others onto the Blue Line like a silly mindless robot. I’d like to say I meant to do that. Take the wrong train as an adventure. But I didn’t realize until I leaned forward to ask the woman in front of me about the stop for Dormont. “You wanted The Red Line,” she said. I knew that. But I still had plenty of time. That’s why I left early.

The Hollywood Theater. An art house theater. In my youth, art houses showed sex and porn. A showing of Deep Throat.┬áin a little country theater along the river in the 70s. People I knew went to see it. I couldn’t picture them there in that dark theater watching Linda Lovelace perform for next to nothing. Now art houses are the venue for independent films and oldies and cult classics and documentaries for the niche viewers. Not porn. You can watch that in the comfort of your own home.

This showing was Lucky with Harry Dean Stanton. Movie location? I’m sure that pan at the beginning was Gates Pass outside Tucson with spiny majestic saguaro. But the movie could have been shot anywhere hot and dusty and Western. Lucky in heeled cowboy boots and western shirt raising his boots in a deliberate fashion to walk down a dirt road. Waiting to die. Scared and accepting the realism of it. Then he died. Not in the movie. In real life. His final work.

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